Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Advent Calendar - 24th December 2014

Beer Advent Calendar
Ilkley Brewery - Mary Christmas 4.7%
24th December 2014

It's the most wonderful night of the year, and it's the most wonderful night of the beer!

I'm sure you're all gearing up for the Big Day tomorrow, hustle bustle, panic and uncertainty, but I'm equally sure you have some great beers ready for this evening and the upcoming days. In the final of my reviews of the year (prior to my Golden Posts) I've picked a few of my favourite UK beers of the year. I hope you've had some of these beers, but if you haven't then I hope you can get them in 2015. Let me know what you think.

The first beer I'm going to bring to your attention is Siren's Whiskey Sour IPA. All (!) this beer consists of is there Limoncello IPA, a phenomenal beer in itself, barrel aged in bourbon infused oak and you get one of the most amzing beers of the year. It's simply stunning and brewed by (maybe!) my brewery of the year. they haven't put a foot wrong in 2014 as far as I'm concerned and I'm sure that they will continue this into 2015 and beyond.

Brew By Numbers 04/04 Berliner Weisse Lime was one of those beers that you could have served me for ever and I wouldn't have been tired of it. The huge lime zest twist works wonderfully over the mild Berliner Weisse base combining to make possibly the most refreshing beer that I've had this year. It comes in huge bottles too, so if you see it buy it.

Staying with the Berliner Weisse style, the next beer I want to bring to your attention is Beavertown's Lemon Phantom. Another superbly refreshing beer that is, I'm afraid, best drunk at the brewery. Get yourself down there and find out while I love this beer so much.

The final beer I want to mention is Quantum Brewery's Pineapple and Chilli sour, a little left field but most certainly removed from all the other beers I;ve had this year. There's a really good fiery prickle of heat here that settles itself nicely alongside the pineapple flavour. It's certainly gorgeous, but hot and gorgeous, with the heat actually giving something wonderful back to it.

And so, for the final tine, here are the answers to today questions. I hope that your did well here as, even though I know that few of you got any of them right you have enjoyed the concept over the last twenty-three days, I know that I've enjoyed setting them.

1. Bah Humbug!

2. Liefmans

3. Winter King

4. Mexico

5. It's brewed in Australia by Holgate, and Christmas is in Summer in the Southern hemisphere.

The final beer of my Ales By Mail Advent Calendar is from another West Yorkshire brewery, albeit a very popular one. Infused with Caribbean rum, this beer is described on their website as an 'amber ale with all the trimmings'. It is the beer that I've been looking forward to when I've heard it was going to be in this Advent Calendar, but I can't wait to see what it tastes like.

It pours a russet amber with a thin pure white head as clean as the driven snow and an aroma that is full of spicy Christmas promise with nutmeg, clove and cinnamon suppressing a some red berry notes struggling to emerge like snow drops in the Spring. Thin with a buzzy festive carbonation it flavour is sweet and sugary like a frosted nutmeg dusted gingerbread biscuit with a few blobs of raspberry jam decoration. the finish is fruity and heady, with the rum finally revealing itself, leaving some faint traces of alcohol on the tongue but combining wonderfully with the sweet Yuletide spiciness to bring it all to a sweet boozy Christmas cake conclusion. This is the most overtly festive beer I've had had in this box and possibly the most overtly Christmas beer I've had for a good few years. It is extremely fitting that this beer has ended this remarkable Advent journey, full of twists and turns and taste sensations, as it is the beer that defines Christmas more than any other. I hope Father Christmas stuffs a bottle in your stocking tonight.

And so for the last time, it's that Christmas cracker joke that I know you all love. Love to loathe perhaps, but it's an integral part of these posts so you're just going to have to lump it for one last time.

There was only one joke that would work for today, and I've had it in mind for today since the beginning of Advent. Whether or not you like it, you can't argue that it isn't topical.

Here we go.

I hope you are ready for this?

If you're not them I'm (not at all) sorry.

What did Adam say just before midnight on the 24th December?

Is it Christmas, Eve?

Now normally I would end here but there really is only one thing to add as this blog fades out of sight:
A Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

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